Gold and Silver Flat After Austerity Deal

On Monday, gold (NYSEARCA:GLD) futures for April delivery decreased 40 cents to settle at $1,724.90 per ounce, while silver (NYSEARCA:SLV) futures edged 12 cents higher to close at $33.72.

The U.S. dollar (NYSE:UUP) edged lower after the Greek Parliament approved a package of austerity reforms on Sunday, clearing the first of three hurdles it must overcome to qualify for a second bailout worth 130 billion euros. Greece needs the bailout funds to avoid a potential default on a 14.5 billion-euro bond redemption on March 20.

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The approved measures include job and salary cuts for government workers, pension reforms, and other measures to reduce government spending.  As a result, rioters took to the streets in Athens in protest of the new reforms.  According to Athens News, “Police said 150 shops were looted in the capital and 48 buildings set ablaze. Some 100 people – including 68 police – were wounded and 130 detained.”

In afternoon trading, the SPDR Gold Trust (NYSEARCA:GLD) climbed .25 percent higher, while the iShares Silver Trust (NYSEARCA:SLV) gained .86 percent.  Gold miners (NYSEARCA:GDX) such as Yamana Gold (NYSE:AUY) and Barrick Gold (NYSE:ABX) both edged slightly lower, while Newmont Mining (NYSE:NEM) declined .50 percent.  Meanwhile, shares of First Majestic Silver (NYSE:AG) gained .80 percent.  Hecla Mining (NYSE:HL) and Endeavour Silver (NYSE:EXK) both declined more than 1 percent.

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To contact the reporter on this story: Eric McWhinnie at staff.writers@wallstcheatsheet.com

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Damien Hoffman at editors@wallstcheatsheet.com